International Challenge Match
France 3-0 Scotland
Saturday 4th June 2016, kick-off 9pm (local time)
Stade Saint-Symphorien, Metz

Giroud 8’ 35’ Koscielny 39’

Didier Deschamps’ France produced an impressive display against Scotland as the UEFA EURO 2016 hosts put Gordon Strachan's team to the sword in Metz.

All three of Les Blues goals came in the first half thanks to a first-half double from Olivier Giroud and a header from Arsenal teammate Laurent Koscielny.

Gordon Strachan made five changes to the Scotland team that lost 1-0 to Italy in Malta the previous Sunday, with Gordon Greer and Steven Fletcher joining the Hull City trio of Andy Robertson, Shaun Maloney and Robert Snodgrass in their return to the starting 11.

Unfortunately for the visitors and the 1200 Scotland supporters at the Stade Saint-Symphorien, France broke the deadlock after just eight minutes, when Olivier Giroud was found in the Scotland box by Bacary Sagna’s cross. The striker, with a delicate back-heel, netted past David Marshall for his 16th goal for his country.

The Arsenal forward did not have long to wait to score his 17th international goal, as he doubled France’s advantage after 35 minutes.

Dimitri Payet’s darting run lead to a shooting opportunity for the West Ham player. His strike was saved by Marshall, but the ball landed to Giroud who, from six yards out, finished with ease.

Four minutes later, the hosts were to score again. A glancing header from Patrice Evra at a France corner found Laurent Koscielny at the back-post, where the defender comfortably headed home their second goal in just four minutes.

Gordon Strachan made two changes at the interval, as Charlie Mulgrew and Ikechi Anya replaced Robertson and Maloney. The pair linked up well in the 56th minute, resulting in a dangerous cross from Anya that Steven Fletcher narrowly failed to connect to.

France, one of the favourites for this summer’s European Championships, maintained their high tempo in the second-half. Paul Pogba’s free-kick crashed off the post while Didier Deschamps’ substitutes, Antoine Griezmann and Anthony Martial, caused Scotland problems as both looked to play their way into the team for the tournament opener against Romania on Friday.

There was no to be no further goals in the second-half, but it did see two Scotland debuts, as Stephen Kingsley and Barrie McKay won their first international caps. 

Next up for Scotland is a trip to Malta in September, where the qualification journey for the FIFA World Cup Russia 2018 begins.

Scotland: Marshall, Martin, Greer, Hanley, Robertson (Mulgrew 46’), D.Fletcher (c), McArthur (McKay 88'), Snodgrass (Kingsley 66’), Maloney (Anya 46’), Ritchie, S.Fletcher (Naismith 58’)

Subs: Fox, Hamilton, Paterson, Byrson, Phillips, Burke, McGinn, McCormack